Student Loan Debt is Not the Only Financial Concern for Young Black Americans

A new study by the Nationwide Retirement Institute finds that young Black Americans report that medical debt is impacting their financial health. Black millennials report carrying substantially more medical debt compared to other generations. Of those respondents who could estimate their medical debt, Black millennials self-reported they have on average $11,469 in medical debt.

The outsized medical debt carried by Black millennials is already impacting their financial outlook and decision-making.

  • More than a third of Black millennials have skipped or delayed getting care to save on medical expenses.
  • Fifty-seven percent say health care expenses have impacted their financial health.
  • More than half of Black millennials (57%) say they have been negatively impacted by financial stress.
  • Of the Black millennials negatively impacted by financial stress, 40 percent say it has impacted their relationships.
  • Black millennials also say they have spent on average $6,145 on health care costs and personal protective equipment during the pandemic.
  • One in five Black millennials (21%) do not have health insurance.

“While each person’s path to financial wellness and wealth will be unique, our latest data clearly demonstrates that young Black Americans collectively face a challenge to success posed by the cost of healthcare,” said Kristi Rodriguez, senior vice president of Nationwide Retirement Institute.


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